What is the first thing to mind? Lavishly wrapped boxes containing a wonderful surprise within?
We all love the attention, affection, and joy that come when someone purchases something and decorates it for us. With a well thought of and decorated gift the giver spends of their selves, of their time, and acquires the materialistic item for the joy of the recipient. It is common to receive these gifts on special days of celebration. But is that the only time we receive a gift?
What if we stepped back and looked a little further into what a gift is? We receive gifts more frequently than we realize, and quite often we do not even recognize we have received them. We receive gifts over a lifetime, we receive gift that we cannot even touch. Gifts are more than tactile; they are emotions and feelings. A gift never exists without gratitude. To recognize when we receive a gift, we must be grateful for what enters our lives, and where the gift originated from. So many achievements in our lives are gifts, they are an accumulation of hard work and gifts from others. A simple opportunity is a gift. Gifts are much more than objects; they are building blocks of a life.
“You give but little when you give of your possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give” – Kahlil Gibran
Must you receive a gift for gratitude to exist? We all have gifts which we carry with us every day. Our skills, affection, compassion, and knowledge can all be gifts. You don’t have to have wealth to offer some of the greatest gifts. The love and wisdom we receive from our parent from the very moment they bring us into this world is a tremendous gift. We have a lifetime of accumulated knowledge and skills to offer others, and those gifts are greater than any currency. This simple act of giving of ourselves can being a fulfilling gift to ourselves because we get to see that gift grow into some greater than ourselves.
“We all have one or more gifts inside of us, but a lot of the time we’re too busy to unwrap that gift” – Steven Aitchison
Life is full of gifts; we just need to have our eyes and mind open to recognize and receive them. I am tremendously grateful to my parents, my community, and every person I have crossed paths with over my life. They have all given me gifts, and without those gifts I would never be where and who I am today. As much joy I have reaped by receiving those gifts, those gifts will give again from the joy of gifting them onto others for their own joy.
“It is every man’s obligation to put back into the world at least the equivalent of what he takes out of it.” – Albert Einstein
“As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. – 1 Peter 4:10